Monday, February 25, 2019

UIS honors Randall F. Dunn and Larry Golden with alumni awards for achievement and service

Larry Golden (Left) and Randall F. Dunn (Right)
The University of Illinois Springfield honored the significant achievements and contributions of Randall F. Dunn and Larry Golden during the annual Alumni Gala on Friday, February 22, 2019, at the UIS Student Union.

The 2019 Alumni Achievement Award for outstanding success and national or international distinction in one’s business, profession or life’s work was presented to Randall F. Dunn, a southwest Florida entrepreneur and community leader. The award is the highest honor bestowed upon alumni of the University. Dunn earned both his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from UIS, then Sangamon State University, in the 1970s.

Upon completion of his graduate degree, Dunn relocated to southwest Florida and within 18 months, partnered with a radiologist to establish the Oncology Center, a radiation therapy and medical oncology cancer treatment center. Dunn also administered Radiology Associates, a hospital-based radiology practice. Dunn and his partner sold their holdings to Navix Diagnostix (Navix Imaging), a merger which saw Dunn become senior vice president of Navix Imaging, Inc., overseeing regional growth and expansion.

Fueled by a passion for entrepreneurship and leadership, Dunn went on to found multiple organizations devoted to medical practice management; home, condominium, medical facility and hotel/motel development; and personal and business finance.

Dunn’s passion for leadership has made a significant impact on his local community in southwest Florida. Dunn is credited with leading the Punta Gorda Revitalization Committee; YMCA; American Cancer Society of Florida; United Way; and has helped found, or served as a member of, other non-profit, community focused organizations including his local Chamber of Commerce, where Dunn was awarded Pacesetter of the Year.

Dunn is a past recipient of the UI Loyalty Award for Exceptional Alumni Service; served on the Development Advisory Board and the National Commission on the Future of UIS; initiated the Capital Steps Scholarship Fund drive, financing its first scholarship; and is a former member of the UI Alumni Association board of directors. His daughter, Rebecca (Dunn) Albertini, is also a UIS graduate, having earned both a business administration and MBA from the University.

The 2019 Distinguished Service Award for extraordinary commitment, dedication and service to the advancement of the University of Illinois was awarded to Springfield resident Larry Golden, UIS emeritus professor of political science and legal studies and founding director of the Illinois Innocence Project. The award is presented to individuals or couples whose consistent, exceptional and meritorious service has made significant impact on the University’s overall welfare and advanced its mission.

Golden is a founding faculty member of the University who earned his Ph.D. in political science from the University of Minnesota, who has dedicated his life and career to teaching and activism on the issues of civil rights and liberties, and of law, inequality and justice.

When Golden first arrived to Springfield, he helped organize efforts to address school desegregation, and the form of local government and representation.

Golden helped found The Springfield Project (TSP), which seeks to unite the city as a community by working to improve the quality of life for all throughout its neighborhoods. Founded upon principles of a similar organization based in Atlanta, Georgia, a service model was implemented to help improve Springfield in areas of most need.

Golden helped found the Downstate Illinois Innocence Project, the forerunner to the Illinois Innocence Project (IIP). The IIP seeks to bring justice to the wrongfully convicted through advocacy, education and reform of the criminal justice system. UIS undergraduates work alongside law students from the state’s public law schools and attorneys to investigate and legally pursue claims of innocence. Golden has been instrumental in securing more than $3 million in grants for IIP in the past 8 years.

Golden retired from full-time teaching and continues to volunteer with IIP. In addition, Golden contributes to a course on conviction of the innocent; and presents on the topic of wrongful conviction and the work occurring across the country to free the innocent.

His distinguished service and leadership are recognized nationally. Golden is a former executive board member of the National Innocence Network, the organization linking more than 50 innocence projects around the country. Golden is also a past recipient of the Courageous Voices Award, presented by the Jewish Council on Urban Affairs. The award recognizes individuals who are at the forefront of pressing issues affecting the community.

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